Medical History for PMS
Your medical history is an important tool
for your doctor in determining whether you have
premenstrual syndrome (PMS). Your medical history
- Record of your PMS symptoms, menstrual dates,
and ovulation dates, if possible. It may help to keep a
menstrual diary(What is a PDF document?).
- History of PMS-like symptoms.
- Menstrual history (age
when you had your first period, problems related to menstruation such as
- Pregnancy history (whether you've had children, what
your pregnancies and deliveries were like, and what kinds of birth control
- Family health history (female relatives with
- Sexual history, including
sexually transmitted infections (STIs).
Based on the length and regularity of your
menstrual cycles , your doctor will try to determine whether you are
releasing an egg from the
ovaries each month (ovulation).
Your doctor may
also ask you about your mental health history, including:
PMS can cause emotional and behavioral symptoms similar to
those of depression or ADHD, so it's important to find out whether you have one
of these problems. Some of these problems can get worse during the premenstrual
phase. If you have PMS as well as another disorder, you may need treatment for
Why It Is Done
Your doctor will take
your medical history if you are having any symptoms of PMS. If your symptoms
affect your mood or behavior, a mental health history is important.
A diagnosis of PMS is indicated when:
- Your symptoms consistently occur (or get
worse) between the day you ovulate and the first days of your period. While
just over 50 out of 100 women ovulate around 2 weeks before their period, the time of
ovulation can vary from woman to woman and month to month. Use a
menstrual diary(What is a PDF document?) to keep track of when your symptoms occur.
- Your medical history does not suggest any other conditions that
may be causing your symptoms.
What To Think About
No single test can diagnose PMS.
A diagnosis of PMS is usually based on your symptoms and medical history. Tests
to check for other medical conditions that might be causing symptoms should be
done only as needed.
Complete the medical test information form (PDF)(What is a PDF document?) to help you prepare for this test.
Primary Medical ReviewerSarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine
Specialist Medical ReviewerKirtly Jones, MD - Obstetrics and Gynecology
Current as ofMarch 12, 2014